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Police remind boaters to be safe after record boat sales in 2020

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OCEAN CITY, Md. —The waterways surrounding Ocean City are full of people enjoying the open water throughout the summer, from pontoon boats and Jet Skis to the sports and commercial fishermen.

Those waters are expected to be even busier this summer after boat sales skyrocketed in 2020. Industry experts say the record sales can be attributed to the pandemic, and police want to remind people this summer to be safe with so many first-time boaters expected to hit the water this summer.

About 320,000 new boats were purchased in 2020 in the U.S., according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association. Recreational boat sales were up 13% from 2019 and were the highest they’ve been since 2008.

Strong recreational boat sales have continued into 2021, according to MMMA, with February’s sales figures being up 34% compared to the same period in 2020.

Cpl. Antonio Deepree, Maryland Department of Natural Resources Police, asks to see lifejackets Wednesday, May 12, 2021, in Ocean City, Maryland.

With all the new boats on the water, the Maryland Natural Resources Police want to remind people to be safe and take the proper precautions when boating, according to a statement from the agency.

Boaters should expect to see NRP officers out on the water this summer ensuring that people are wearing life jackets and observing the proper rules, according to the statement.

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Source: GANNETT Syndication Service